As part of the internship programme, I attended the Women in Mining Breakfast hosted by SAIMM and WIMSA, on behalf of MEMSA. The topic for the day was The Leadership in the Connection Economy- Understanding Leadership Styles to foster Relationships for Business Success. Speaker of the day, Marinda Hawthorn, is known for asking tough questions such as, are your passions aligned with the work that you’re currently doing? She has 20 years’ experience in leadership, and believes that glass ceilings are a myth that we create ourselves. Women are known to overstep their boundaries, and then apologize, but Miranda encourages us to overstep and not be apologetic about it. She went on to further say that the fact that one is able, means one can think. And when you can think you’re able to make a change.

Marinda Hawthorn, speaker at the WIM Breakfast hosted by SAIMM and WIMSA

There are five expectations employees have of their leaders, these are:

  1. Tell me what you expect of me.
  2. Allow me to perform.
  3. Help me when I need help.
  4. Tell me how I am doing, and
  5. Reward me according to my contribution.

The agenda of the talk consisted of three topics; Trust, Leadership in the connection economy and Leadership purpose and roles. Women have a natural tendency to deliver on these expectations. If the expectations are consistently met, you be a good people leader. And very few leaders get this right, why? Because of a lack of trust. A lack of trust is a sign of lack of control, because when we lose control we rule with fear. This then brings up the question, what can be done by leaders to effectively create and manage culture of trust? Great leaders make use of the philosophy “trust is given” without guarantee of a return, because in order to understand we have to trust.

Organisations have not evolved much, however the people in the organisations have evolved. With most organisations oriented around more output, and less care versus Planet, People and Profit. The information era gives us information at our fingertips, but doesn’t encourage human interaction. Requirements for the connection economy include: Intuition, Patience, Empathy, Long-term planning, Do and think many things simultaneously, Consensus seeking, Flexibility, Cooperation, Talent with words, Emotional sensitivity, Talent to read non-verbal cues, and Interactive- collaborative leadership. All of which require some level of human interaction


The primary roles of a good leader include:

  • Engaging and mobilizing people in order to establish and reinforce values and purpose.
  • Developing vision and strategy.
  • Delivering results.
  • Fostering organisational culture.
  • Distinguishing management an
    d leadership.

There are six leadership styles, which have direct impact on organizational climate and financial results: Coercive, Visionary, Affiliative, Democratic, Pace-setting and Coaching.